Archbishop Ieronymos said on Monday that he and his colleagues “love the Patriarchate” and the country’s political leadership but love the Church of Greece and the country more than anything else.
“We love them all [the Patriarchate and politicians] but we must stress that we love our church and country more,” he told journalists.
His remarks followed the cancellation last Thursday of a meeting with Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomaios in Athens in what was seen as a sign of a widening rift between the pair.
Analysts say the cancellation reflected souring relations between the Istanbul-based Ecumenical Patriachate and the Church of Greece.
The two sides are currently locked in a legal dispute over Aghios Georgios Church in the Prombona area of Ano Patissia in Athens.